Bob Dylan and Philosophy: Its Alright Ma (Im Only Thinking) (Popular Culture and Philosophy)

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Physical Description xvii, p. Series Popular culture and philosophy ; v. Subjects Dylan, Bob, -- Philosophy. Dylan, Bob, -- Political and social views. Klagge Just like a woman: Spiegel Busy being born again: Beckwith Language on the lam b: Notes Includes bibliographical references, discography p. View online Borrow Buy Freely available Show 0 more links Related resource Table of contents only at http: Set up My libraries How do I set up "My libraries"?

These 5 locations in All: Open to the public ; University of Queensland Library. If a killer is only a pawn in their game, is he relieved of all moral responsibility? If to live outside the law you must be honest, is freedom more of a burden than conformity? Is it morally defensible to bootleg Dylan recordings? The authors of this book do not treat him as a mysterious fount of wisdom but as a participant in a philosophical colloquy ranging across space and time. It examines Dylan's work in a reasonably serious way and filters So, my feelings on this book were somewhat complex.

It examines Dylan's work in a reasonably serious way and filters it through the lens of philosophy. In other words, it takes the implications of Dylan's lyrics and explores them in an intellectual sense. It does that admirably. They did take the artist's work seriously and they treated it respectfully.

Ennyman's Territory: Bob Dylan and Philosophy: It's Alright, Ma (I'm Only Thinking)

I was afraid the book might be one of those snarky type affairs where they lance the artist with humor and sarcasm. There is one fault I found in this regard, but I'll go into that after my next point.


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The thing is, as I read it, I realized that this kind of high intellectual philosophizing and Dylan's music don't mix well for me, personally. The beauty of Dylan's music lies in its mystery. That's where the magic comes from. It is the beauty of dreams, not the beauty of science. In a way, I felt like disassembling his words to try to unearth whatever Dylan's worldview might be was sort of cheapening the art for me.

Bob Dylan and Philosophy: It's Alright Ma (I'm Only Thinking) (Popular Culture and Philosophy)

If you read Dylan's earliest interviews, when he was much less distrustful of the media and a little bit more apt to open up, he actually spoke a bit about his view of the role of the artist, and it was precisely to share a Rimbaud-like, transcendent vision. He was not ever trying to communicate a cohesive political or philosophical worldview, and to approach his music from that direction is to miss out on its greater magic.

That's the point I think this book largely missed.

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Still, as I said, I give it 4 stars because it's not the book's fault that I ended up not wanting to look at Dylan's music in this way. The book does what it says it's going to do, and it does well. Mar 27, Gerry Beane rated it liked it Shelves: It's very easy to begin to over analyze Dylan.

I'm afraid this tome has begun to cross that line. Although there are some interesting insights and some thought provoking analyses, I'm afraid that 'Zimmie' would say that a good deal of it is inflated horse puckie. Still, I am always interested in how far people are willing to go to deconstruct every word or phrase whether it had been originated by Dylan, The Beatles or Pink Floyd.

The opinions expressed above do not necessarily represent those of the website, the authors of the essays or the artist himself. Sep 12, Rob the Obscure rated it liked it. An interesting collection of articles on the philosophical insights embedded in Dylan's lyrics and poetry.

Feb 26, Ed rated it really liked it. I've long been a fan of books with collections of essays around a theme. The public library has shelves full of books in the literary criticism section dealing with the works of famous and lesser known authors.


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I discovered Nobel laureate Andre Gide through one of these books. I later purchased a fairly fat Norton Anthology that was a collection of essays on Joseph Conrad's story Heart of Darkness. The books can be compared to a curated art show featuring works by different artists, except that I've long been a fan of books with collections of essays around a theme.

The books can be compared to a curated art show featuring works by different artists, except that in this case the "art" comes in a literary form.


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In I purchased a book of this ilk called Bob Dylan and Philosophy. Published in by Open Court Press, it has been my current bedtime reading for the past couple weeks or so. I only recently noticed that it is numero 17 in a series called Popular Culture and Philosophy. The subtitles are clever. In other words, there's a playfulness in their seriousness.

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The sixteen essays in this book are served up as if tracks on an album. The first eight are listed as Side 1 in the table of contents. The second set is, naturally, Side 2. I've not finished yet, but every passage I've read has been solid.